By Dark Angel

Greetings to you who are reading these words and travelling this mysterious path which could take you to many destinations you otherwise may never explore.

The first spark of the flame which inspired the creation of The Gothic Alliance appeared not in a vision, debate, plan or with one person. Rather, it glowed as a hope — a hope that something would change in a life that had become a long exile in winter.


It began with the founding of The Gothic Meetup of Manchester, which I found one night the Internet many years ago while whilst searching... searching for something? ... Perhaps just as you have found The Gothic Alliance.

In that moment, my long winter was drawing to a close.

Gatherings were then called "meetups". They were arranged by the organiser of the group who paid a fee to "".

I attended my first meetup at the end of December 2006, meeting on the steps of an art gallery in the city. That first meetup consisted of only the original organiser and me. Two months later, however, they were twenty of us.

We called out meetups at the first on a monthly basis, settling on a certain day in the month — the second Sunday in the afternoon at a central location for a duration of two hours.

Manchester Gathering

From this beginning we built The Gothic Meetup of Manchester, or GMM for short. People came to the gatherings having found us on the Internet, by word of mouth, or the small handwritten card we left in local places. They came in twos and threes — friends, partners and as a single people as I once did.

They formed friendships, organised events and shared interests. Some came every month, some rarely and some came once and never returned. We continued.

The GMM did not have the framework of The XIII Principles outlined for The Gothic Alliance, and some individuals created difficulties at our gatherings. We left them behind and forged ahead.

Other gothic meetups appeared in different towns and cities. We visited them and their members came to our meetups. We corresponded and posted on each other's message boards.

But then the world changed, and then they were gone.

Stockport Gathering

The whole story, in words and photographs and, in recent years only photographs, is still preserved on the meetup site for reference.

The online world changed, but the GMM remains as a great castle. It’s halls are empty now, with the once famed message boards abandoned for Facebook etc. There’s just occasional traveller passing through nowadays.

But the gatherings continued and are established as an occurring on the 2nd Sunday as always. It is a place for any returning members, new visitors and always offered to anyone who finds us. They continue to this day.

Call Your Own Gathering

Now is the time to take the flame and to light from it as many torches as there are people who may be willing to take one. And from these words, create gatherings of The Gothic Alliance.

The person taking up this torch, which here is offered to you, would be "The Caller" of "The Gathering". Using the XIII Principles of The Gothic Alliance, and the 17 years experience of the GMM, a Caller may form a Gathering of The Gothic Alliance in any part of this world or other.

Gothic Fireplace

Conceived before the world fell into shadows, it has been a long wait but now is the time to take up a torch and call a Gathering. The world is ready and needs The Gothic Alliance.

The first two Gatherings of The Gothic Alliance were held in February 2020, one in Manchester GB — the birthplace of the GMM, and the other in New Zealand on the other side of the world.

Select a date, time and a suitable venue. These decisions will be based on what you have available. Generally, you should select a quiet, informal, central and easily accessible place which can return to. Visit it first, at the time you plan to hold your Gathering.

Use The Raven Symbol, and invite people you know.

Make small handwritten cards and hand them to people you think may wish to join you, and leave a few in place you think may be appropriate. Deal with questions — answer simple or direct them to The Gothic Alliance website. Follow The XIII Principles.

No matter how few people you find at your Gathering at first, do not be discouraged. Keep the flame burning. Pledge to complete 6 to 12 months on a monthly basis.

Above all, remember there are many out there who would come to the light and they need to see it.

The Gothic Alliance Raven

Written in stone and carried by fire